Curt Anderson/Associated Press
Florida and 20 other states (including South Caroliona) have sued to halt the federal government's pandemic requirement that people wear masks on planes, trains and other public transport. The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in federal court in Tampa, Florida. It contends that the mask mandate exceeds the authority of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC rule took effect Feb. 1, 2021. It requires "the wearing of masks by people on public transportation conveyances or on the premises of transportation hubs," according to the agency website. The rule has been relaxed somewhat but was recently extended until at least April 18 for domestic and international travel in general.
Tropical Storm Elsa is carving a destructive and soaking path up the East Coast after killing at least one person in Florida and spinning up a tornado at a Georgia Navy base that flipped recreational vehicles and threw one of them into a lake. One person was killed in Jacksonville, Florida, when a tree fell onto a car. Elsa was expected to pass near the eastern mid-Atlantic states by Thursday night and move near or over the northeastern United States on Friday. Tropical storm warnings were in effect along the coast from North Carolina to Connecticut.